The Department of Energy’s Office of Cybersecurity, Energy Security, and Emergency Response Applauds the Landmark Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal
On November 15, President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. signed into law the Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act – also known as the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law – a once-in-a-generation investment in our nation’s infrastructure that will deliver transformative benefits to American families, workers, businesses, and communities. The deal marks the largest investment in the resilience of physical and natural infrastructure in American history. It will harden U.S. infrastructure against 21st century threats and make our communities more safe and secure.
From cyber-attacks to growing climate change-induced threats, U.S. energy systems are facing an unprecedented and evolving threat landscape. Incidents like Winter Storm Uri, Hurricane Ida, and the Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack caused billions of dollars in damage. 2021 demonstrated how these threats can disrupt our energy supplies, economy, and everyday lives.
As the Sector Risk Management Agency for the energy sector, the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) highest priorities includes securing the Nation’s energy infrastructure against all threats and hazards – both natural and manmade. DOE’s Office of Cybersecurity, Energy Security, and Emergency Response (CESER) manages these responsibilities, working closely with public and private sector partners to address risks to the sector and support industry and government partners in restoring power and fuel when a disruption occurs.
The Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal provides $27 billion to upgrade and modernize our electrical grid to make it more resilient to extreme weather and resistant to cyber-attacks, helping CESER advance its energy security mission through:
- A resilience grant program to harden electric infrastructure, including efforts to reduce the risk of wildfires, in partnership with industry and states.
- Investments in enhanced grid security, including cybersecurity R&D, technical assistance, and threat assessments.
- Establishment of a program to test the cybersecurity of products and technologies intended for use in the energy sector. The program will build upon CESER’s Cyber Testing for Resilient Industrial Control Systems (CyTRICS) program.
- Support of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) exploration of options to incentivize investment in cybersecurity technologies and threat information sharing.
- A new DOE Rural and Municipal Utility Advanced Cybersecurity Grant and Technical Assistance Program.
- New and continued efforts to strengthen the security of U.S. energy sector hardware and software, bolster the cybersecurity workforce, advance modeling capabilities, and improve cyber threat detection, response, and resilience capabilities.
- A DOE-wide cybersecurity plan that requires all award or funding recipients to (1) demonstrate the cybersecurity maturity of the project or solution and (2) establish a plan to maintain and improve the cybersecurity throughout the life of the project or solution.
Extreme weather disasters like hurricanes, wildfires, heat waves, and freezes disproportionately hurt communities of color, who are more likely to live in vulnerable areas and without access to air conditioning, heat, and critical services. The deal is also the largest investment in environmental justice and clean energy manufacturing, ensuring we can grow domestic industries and provide Americans with good-paying, union jobs – making sure no community is left behind.
The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law is a historic investment that will help ensure that all Americans have access to clean, reliable energy and that as we build our energy systems back better and cleaner, they are resilient and secure.
READ DOE’s factsheet on the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal.